It’s that time of the year again, folks! It’s Oscar season. Less than a week from today, Oscars will be given out at the Kodiak Theatre in Los Angeles, California for the Oscars. This year has honestly been a roller coaster in terms of predicting the winners in the larger categories such as Best Picture and Best Director most notably. At some point over the last few months, most of this year’s Best Picture nominees were front-runners to win. The Oscars have been fairly predictable in the last couple of years (note: I still enjoyed the ceremonies, even the one when James Franco was stoned.) This year’s Oscar ceremony isn’t going to be so predictable. Even when this year’s nominees were announced last month, I was completely taken by surprise by a few nominations and unsettling snubs. The only categories that I think are locked at this point are Best Actor (Daniel Day-Lewis for Lincoln), Best Supporting Actress (Anne Hathaway for Les Misérables) and Best Original Song (Adele for “Skyfall”). Beyond those three categories, who knows what film or which actor will take home an Oscar. Posted below are my predictions for this year’s Oscars.
As mentioned before, most of this year’s Best Picture nominees have been front-runners at some point throughout the last few months. Just a couple months ago, it seemed like a sure bet that either Steven Spielberg’s historical misfire Lincoln or Kathryn Bigelow’s incredible Zero Dark Thirty was going to win. The buzz for Lincoln has since faded and so has the buzz over Zero Dark Thirty (blame the “torture criticism” over that). Ben Affleck’s thriller Argo, once thought of as a dark horse, has been sweeping the awards so it’s fair to predict that the film may end up winning the night’s biggest prize. If Argo wins Best Picture, it’ll be the first film since Driving Miss Daisy in which a film won Best Picture without a Best Director nomination. Perhaps voters within the Academy won’t favor Argo after all. David O. Russell’s Silver Linings Playbook has been generating a lot of buzz due to a exhausted Oscar campaign trail for the film. Silver Linings Playbook has the chance to be a spoiler. In a perfect world, however, Zero Dark Thirty would win this award without question.
Beasts of the Southern Wild
Life of Pi
Silver Linings Playbook
Zero Dark Thirty
Will win: Argo
Should win: Zero Dark Thirty
When the nominees were announced last month, this is the one category that surprised and angered many. You can’t deny the fact that Ben Affleck and Kathryn Bigelow were snubbed. Before I cross the line and start ranting, I’ll just focus on the nominated directors. It’s been 14 years since Steven Spielberg has won an Oscar so I have a feeling that the Academy may come down with “Spielberg Fever”. Now I’m not saying that is a reason to give him an Oscar, but he may have a large chance of winning. This is one of this year’s most unpredictable categories so who knows which of these five directors will win. Out of the five, my personal vote is for Michael Haneke for his masterful direction in Amour.
Ang Lee–Life of Pi
David O. Russell–Silver Linings Playbook
Benh Zeitlin–Beasts of the Southern Wild
Will win: Steven Spielberg
Should win: Michael Haneke
BEST ACTOR IN A LEADING ROLE
If you’re in the same category as Daniel Day-Lewis at an awards show, chances are you’ll probably lose. Daniel Day-Lewis has been winning numerous awards for his performance and will probably win his third Oscar. There’s no denying that his performance in Lincoln was fantastic but it wasn’t as memorable as Joaquin Phoenix’s performance in Paul Thomas Anderson’s The Master. I don’t think the Academy is going to agree with me though.
Bradley Cooper–Silver Linings Playbook
Hugh Jackman–Les Misérables
Joaquin Phoenix–The Master
Will win: Daniel Day-Lewis
Should win: Joaquin Phoenix
BEST ACTRESS IN A LEADING ROLE
There’s a chance that history could be made on Sunday. You may already know this but Emmanuelle Riva is the oldest Best Actress nominee in Oscar history at 85 years old (she turns 86 on Oscar night) and Quvenzhané Wallis is the youngest nominee ever at the age of nine. Out of the two, Emmanuelle Riva has the best shot at winning. Riva recently won the Best Actress BAFTA Award so there’s a good chance she’ll beat out front-runners Jennifer Lawrence and Jessica Chastain. My money is on Jennifer Lawrence who seems to have been racking up awards for her performance in Silver Linings Playbook. Although Lawrence was great in the film, my personal choice is Jessica Chastain. I haven’t seen a more perfect performance by an actress in all of last year.
Jessica Chastain- Zero Dark Thirty
Jennifer Lawrence-Silver Linings Playbook
Quvenzhané Wallis-Beasts of the Southern Wild
Naomi Watts-The Impossible
Will win: Jennifer Lawrence
Should win: Jessica Chastain
BEST ACTOR IN A SUPPORTING ROLE
After starring in a few duds over the last few years, Robert De Niro has made quite a comeback with his amazing performance in Silver Linings Playbook. It would be fantastic to see him win his first Oscar since Raging Bull in 1981. Philip Seymour Hoffman also gave a fantastic performance in The Master. Even though De Niro and Hoffman are my personal favorites to win, I wouldn’t count out Christoph Waltz who was awarded Best Supporting Actor at the Golden Globe Awards last month. This is a category in which any of these five actors all have equal chances of winning. I’m just going to randomly select Philip Seymour Hoffman as the winner.
Robert De Niro–Silver Linings Playbook
Philip Seymour Hoffman–The Master
Tommy Lee Jones–Lincoln
Christoph Waltz–Django Unchained
Will win: Philip Seymour Hoffman
Should win: Robert De Niro
BEST ACTRESS IN A SUPPORTING ROLE
“And the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress goes to…Anne Hathaway.” It’s pretty much guaranteed at this point that this is what you’re going to hear on Sunday. Anne Hathaway’s emotional performance in Les Misérables was outstanding. The other actresses in this category gave fine performances (most notably Amy Adams in The Master) but the Oscar is Hathaway‘s and deservedly so.
Amy Adams-The Master
Anne Hathaway-Les Misérables
Helen Hunt-The Sessions
Jacki Weaver-Silver Linings Playbook
Will win: Anne Hathaway
Should win: Anne Hathaway
BEST ORIGINAL SCREENPLAY
At one time it was believed that Wes Anderson’s latest film Moonrise Kingdom was going to receive a good amount of Oscar love but the film received only one nomination for Best Original Screenplay. Moonrise Kingdom probably won’t win the Oscar but it definitely deserves it for daring to be different and quirky. Mark Boal recently won the WGA Award for Best Original Screenplay for Zero Dark Thirty, but yet Quentin Tarantino won Best Original Screenplay at the Golden Globe Awards. I’m thinking it’s going to come down between Quentin Tarantino and Mark Boal.
Amour-written by Michael Haneke
Django Unchained-written by Quentin Tarantino
Flight-written by John Gatins
Moonrise Kingdom-written by Wes Anderson and Roman Coppola
Zero Dark Thirty-written by Mark Boal
Will win: Quentin Tarantino-Django Unchained or Mark Boal-Zero Dark Thirty
Should win: Wes Anderson and Roman Coppola-Moonrise Kingdom
BEST ADAPTED SCREENPLAY
Many believe Tony Kushner is going to win the Best Adapted Screenplay for Lincoln but I beg to differ. The buzz surrounding Silver Linings Playbook may lead David O. Russell to win the Oscar. The only writer to beat out David O. Russell is Chris Terrio for his screenplay for Argo. Terrio recently won the WGA Award for Best Adapted Screenplay, which is usually a promising sign.
Argo-written by Chris Terrio
Beasts of the Southern Wild-written by Benh Zeitlin and Lucy Alibar
Life of Pi-written by David Magee
Lincoln-written by Tony Kushner
Silver Linings Playbook-written by David O. Russell
Will win: David O. Russell-Silver Linings Playbook or Chris Terrio-Argo
Should win: David O. Russell-Silver Linings Playbook
The five documentaries nominated for Best Documentary Feature this year are all fantastic. I wouldn’t be upset if any of these films win the Oscar but there can only be one winner. Malik Bendjelloui’s award winning documentary Searching For Sugar Man is the current front-runner. The film centers on the search for a mysterious musician named Rodriguez. The documentary won the BAFTA this year and will likely win on Sunday night.
5 Broken Cameras
How To Survive a Plague
The Invisible War
Searching For Sugar Man
Will win: Searching For Sugar Man
Should win: How To Survive a Plague
BEST FOREIGN LANGUAGE FILM
Michael Haneke’s Amour is the first foreign language film in years to be nominated for both Best Picture and Best Foreign Language Film. While Amour probably won’t win Best Picture, I’ll honestly be shocked if the film doesn’t win in this category. It’s a humanistic and haunting film about love and death showcasing remarkable performances by the two leads.
A Royal Affair (Denmark)
War Witch (Canada)
Will win: Amour
Should win: Amour
BEST ANIMATED FILM
The Best Animated Film category at the Oscars has always been one of the most predictable. The reason it’s been so predictable is due to the fact that whenever a Pixar animated film was nominated it would win, or at least prove to be difficult to compete with. Even though Brave is a Pixar film, I think it’ll lose out to the much superior Wreck-It Ralph. The film is vastly more entertaining than any other animated film released last year. I must ask, why in the world was Pirates! Band of Misfits even nominated?
The Pirates! Band of Misfits
Will win: Wreck-It Ralph
Should win: Wreck-It Ralph
Post your predictions in the comment section below! The Oscars airs live on February 24th.